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Factoids offer brief snapshots of current topics pertinent to the Furniture industry based on our on-going research. Increase your grasp of current trends, consumer attitudes, and shifts within the industry through solid statistics and concise insight.

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The Rise of E-Commerce in Furniture Manufacturing and the Merchant Wholesale Trade Furniture Manufacturing*


This is the second factoid in a series of four factoids addressing the rise of e-commerce in  furniture manufacturing and the merchant wholesale trade. A report from the Census Bureau shows business to business (B2B) e-shipments within the furniture and related manufacturing segment is now approaching 51 percent of the value of total shipments or $35.2 billion dollars in 2014. The Census Bureau defines manufacturers’ shipments to include “orders accepted for manufactured products from customers, including shipments to other domestic plants”. (See Methodology and Definitions in the first factoid of this series.)


The total value of manufacturing shipments in the furniture industry took a downturn alongside the economy during the recession. The 2014 value at $69.6 is still 9.9 percent below 2002. E-commerce shipments on the other hand kept an upward trajectory through the recession – increasing a total of 335.9 percent over 12 years. While total furniture and related products manufacturing increased by 15.4 percent since 2009, e-commerce shipments jumped another 70.3 percent to finish 2014 at $35.2 billion.

The percentage of total dollar shipments via e-commerce has climbed from 10.5 percent in 2002 to 50.6 percent in 2014 with the vast majority of growth (313 percent) occurring between 2002 and 2011 . From 2011 to 2013, increases of e-commerce as a percentage of total shipments tapered off. However, an 11 percent jump in 2014 pushed e-commerce to over half of furniture and related products shipment dollars.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Survey of Manufacturers and the Economic Census
*Furniture and related products manufacturing

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FastFact: Value of B2B E-commerce Shipments Rises Steadily in Past Decade
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